Boulder Caves

Lost River Reservation

Useful Information

Location: Lost River Reservation, North Woodstock, White Mountains.
Open: 15-MAY to JUN daily 9-17.
JUL to AUG daily 9-18.
SEP to 15-OCT daily 9-17.
Last ticket sold 60 minutes before closing.
Fee: Adults USD 11, Children (4-12) USD 7, Children (0-3) free.
Groups: Adults USD 10, Children (13-18) USD 8, Children (4-12) USD 6, Children (0-3) free.
Classification: SpeleologyTectonic cave
Guided tours: self guided, D=60 min., L=1,200 m. V=48,000/a [2002].
Address: Lost River Gorge & Boulder Caves, PO Box 87, Route 112W, North Woodstock, NH 03262, Tel. +1-630-745-8031 E-mail: contact
As far as we know this information was accurate when it was published (see years in brackets), but may have changed since then.
Please check rates and details directly with the companies in question if you need more recent info.


1852 first documented exploration of Lost River by the brothers Royal and Lyman Jackman.
1911 Edward W. Rollins donated the Rollins shelter for use as a rest and lunch room, which is still in use today as gift shop.
1984 direction of the trail reverted.
1985 Falls of Proserpine clogged up by Hurricane Gloria.
2006 Lost River Gorge waterfall reopened.


Boulder Caves is less a name, but a description. Lost River Gorge is characterized by a brook, which disappears between granite boulders, until it eventually emerges and joins the Pemigewasset River. Those boulders, the result of the glaciers of the last ice age and subsequent erosion, form numerous caves, both in the river bed and beneath. Some caves along the trail are big enough to walk in, some are narrow and require some agility to go in.

The Lost River Reservation is located at Kinsman Notch, a pass between Mt. Moosilauke and Mt. Kinsman, about 650 m asl. This is close to North Woodstock in the White Mountains. The brook draining the southern part of Kinsman Notch flows through a narrow, steep-walled glacial Gorge. A series of wooden walkways, bridges and ladders make the gorge accessible on a one hour walk.

The caves along the path are called Cave of Odin, Devil's Kitchen, the Cave of Silence, Parallel Rocks, Center of the Earth and Dungeon. Lemon Squeezer and Bear Crawl are rather low, as expected. The next caves are Judgement Hall of Pluto and Shadow Cave. Finally the gorge ends at the Rotunda with a Covered Bridge.

The biggest cave is Shadow Cave, named for several broad, dark streaks on its wall. This are not shadows, but stains caused by the oxidation of iron in the granite. The cave has a dome-like 6 m high roof, with four immense boulders hanging from above. The stream flows through the cave forming a one metre high rapid.

A 3 m high waterfall called Falls of Proserpine can be found at the end of a small cave. The falls were named in honor of Pluto's wife, Proserpine: 1985 Hurricane Gloria hit the state and caused a lot of damage. Wood, mud, and debris were washed into the small cave and clogged the waterfall. In 2005, after 20 years, the debris was removed in three weeks work. It is New Hampshire's only underground waterfall. The waterfall is again a part of the gorge trail system.